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Seton Hall Pirates guard Jared Rhoden (14), guard Myles Cale (22), center Ike Obiagu (21), forward Alexis Yetna (10), guard Jamir Harris (15) and guard Bryce Aiken (1) are honored during Senior Night at the Prudential Center. (Photo by Tijana Minic | Staff Photographer)

Seniors Go Out With a Bang as Pirates Down Georgetown 73-68

After two consecutive Senior Night losses, the Pirates have finally sent their senior players out with a win as Seton Hall downed Georgetown 73-68 on Wednesday night. The Hoyas fell to 0-18 in conference play thanks to a 16-point effort from senior Jared Rhoden and an all-around showcase by sophomore Kadary Richmond.

Before tip, the Pirates honored their six senior and graduate senior players. Jared Rhoden, Myles Cale, Bryce Aiken, Ike Obiagu, Alexis Yetna, and Jamir Harris were presented with a highlight reel, came out to half court with their families, and were gifted their framed jersey.

It was a beautiful ceremony, especially for Rhoden and Cale, the only two of the group who remained Pirates for their entire collegiate careers.

Despite the festivities, there was still a 40-minute battle to be won against a Georgetown squad that came into Wednesday winless in conference play.

After a back-and-forth first half, Seton Hall entered the locker room with a slim 42-36 lead over the Hoyas.

The Pirate-lifers in Rhoden and Cale led the way with 7 points each, while the point guard Richmond had 6 of his own, along with 3 rebounds and 6 assists.

All eight Pirates in the first half rotation scored at least once, with 6 scoring at least five points. That, along with three blocks from Obiagu, kept Patrick Ewing's Hoyas at bay at least for the first 20 minutes.

The Hoyas came out in the second half and immediately brought the Pirate lead down to one point. Despite the Pirates looking like the superior team practically the entire game, the Hoyas remained resilient and hung around. Georgetown never took a lead at any point in the final 20 minutes, but never allowed Seton Hall to attain an insurmountable lead.

Ewing's squad continually reached the brink, as it was a one possession game with under a minute left, but key defensive stops put the game out of reach in the final moments.

Rhoden continued his late-season dominance, finishing with 16 points and 6 rebounds, a stat line that was bolstered by 12 points from fellow senior Harris and 11 from fellow senior Cale.

Head coach Kevin Willard could not speak more highly of his group of seniors.

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"Consistency," Willard said when describing the class. "Consistent effort, consistent attitude, consistent work ethic. I never had an issue with these guys from the standpoint of they all came in when the program was really starting to take off and they took a lot of pride in keeping it where the program is. I think that's what I love about this group. They took a lot of pride in keeping the program to where the guys before them had gotten it. They took a lot of pride in that."

Performance of the night was not by a senior, however, as Richmond finished with 12 points, 10 assists, and 5 rebounds, good enough for his first double-double as a Pirate.

"[Richmond] does what he does," Harris said of Richmond's performance. "He's an unselfish player, looks to get his teammates involved and score when he can. He tries to affect the game in as many ways as he can and he did that tonight, again. We expect that from him. We push him to be the best version of himself every night out and that's what he wants to do. Tonight was just another performance that we know he's capable of."

After an emotional night in Newark, the Pirates have until Saturday to regain their composure when they take on Creighton in Nebraska for the final game of the regular season.

"To the fans, I'm so thankful for the constant support and the constant engagement whether it's on social media or before the games," Rhoden said in his final farewell to fans. "They're just always supporting us. It's been a long career for me. Since I stepped on the court my freshman year, it's been nothing but positive, good thoughts, good energy, good voices and I'm grateful for that forever. Seton Hall basketball changed my life."

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